The BC real estate market is showing signs of recovering from the changes in government regulations with respect to stress testing and foreign buyers.  When adjusted for seasonal buying trends, there has been an overall increase in sales of 3.5%.  However, in Greater Vancouver, the Fraser Valley, Okanagan and Kamloops regions, homes and listings are both down from this time last year.  The recent LNG announcement for BC’s north has led to a small increase in sales in that region.

IN THE NEWS

The B.C. Real Estate Association reports that the B.C. real estate market is showing signs of bouncing back from its government intervention-induced downturn.  Despite the continued slide in home sales totals, the BCREA said that the market is already looking like it is recovering from the recent downturn, which it believes was largely caused by government intervention in the market, especially the federal mortgage stress test introduced in January.  According to the BCREA the actual sales totals do not take into account seasonal trends in home buying, and a much more accurate graph looks at the seasonally adjusted sales figure. According to the association’s calculations, the market has turned from its trough in June, and since then has seen a relative increase in activity of around 3.5 per cent, on a seasonally adjusted basis.

The Greater Vancouver Real Estate Board says home sales across the region in September plunged more than 40 per cent compared with the same month last year.  September sales in Metro Vancouver were also 36 per cent below the 10-year sales average for the month. More homes were listed across Metro Vancouver in September while demand remained below typical levels for this time of year.

Vancouver is known for being Canada’s most unaffordable real estate market, but according to a new study by Simon Fraser University using 2016 data, the city ranks above all other metro areas across North America too.  As for Vancouver’s current ranking on the list, the report says if 2018 data was used to calculate the cities’ ratios, Vancouver would most likely remain as the most unaffordable housing market.

The BC Northern Real Estate Board reports that the northern BC real estate markets have been steady and doing well when compared to the southern areas of the province.  The economy in the north and north central regions of the province remains strong and the recent LNG announcement will hopefully renew confidence for consumers in the Peace region.  In the northern region of B.C. overall, there was a 1.28% increase in sales and a 9.42% decrease in the number of active listings.  According to the BC NREB, as the result of a strong economy most markets in the north have been somewhat immune to the negative effects of the mortgage stress test apparent in the lower mainland.


STATS AT-A-GLANCE


BC UNEMPLOYMENT RATES

RegionsRate from September to October 2018Rate from August to September 2018
Northern B.C.9.4%9.8%
Southern Coastal6.2%6.4%
Southern Interior7.7%8.0%
Vancouver4.4%4.5%
Victoria4.7%5.1%

Table source: http://srv129.services.gc.ca/ei_regions/eng/rates_cur.aspx

REAL ESTATE ACTIVITY BY REGION

Greater Vancouver

  • Units sold: 43.5% decrease from Sept, 2017
  • Active listings: 38.2% increase from Sept, 2017
  • New listings: 1.8% decrease from Sept, 2017
  • Benchmark price: $1,070,000.00 (3.1% decrease over last 3 months)*

Victoria 

  • Units sold: 16.7% decrease from Sept, 2017
  • Active listings: 33.9% increase from Sept, 2017
  • Benchmark price: $883,700.00 (6.2% increase from Sept, 2017)*

Kamloops

  • Units sold: 17% decrease from Sept, 2017
  • Active listings: 50% increase from Sept, 2017
  • New listings: 23% increase from Sept, 2017
  • Average residential price: $444,000.00 (16% increase from Sept, 2017)

Fraser Valley

  • Units sold: 36.1% decrease from Sept, 2017
  • Active listings: 30.6% increase from Sept, 2017
  • New listings: 3.4% increase from Sept, 2017
  • Benchmark price: $988,900 (1.1% increase from Sept, 2017)*

Central Okanagan

  • Units sold: 21% decrease from Sept, 2017
  • Active listings: 29% increase from Sept, 2017
  • New listings: 1.5% decrease from Sept, 2017
  • Average residential price: $ 534,943 (8% increase from Sept, 2017)

*Benchmark based on the MLS HPI® benchmark for single family detached homes.

Sources:

  1. http://www.bcrea.bc.ca/docs/news-2018/2018-08.pdf
  2. https://theprovince.com/news/local-news/metro-vancouver-september-home-sales-plunge-40-vs-same-time-last-year-real-estate-board/wcm/8ee64207-4542-47ef-be33-11349157cc96
  3. https://www.huffingtonpost.ca/2018/07/24/vancouver-real-estate-market-least-affordable_a_23488730/?ncid=other_email_o63gt2jcad4&utm_campaign=share_email
  4. http://www.bcnreb.bc.ca/board-news-releases
  5. https://www.rebgv.org/monthly-reports/september-2018
  6. https://www.vreb.org/current-statistics
  7. http://www.kamloopsrealestateblog.com/category/kamloops-real-estate-statistics/
  8. http://www.fvreb.bc.ca/stats/
  9. https://www.omreb.com/files/09-CO%20Statistics-%20September-2018.pdf

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